Today is the first post in a new “Should I?” series.
The premise is simple. Everyone is sheltered-in-place. Should I go live with my business (especially direct sales) on social media?
In this series, I give you the answers I’ve discovered for me. I hope it helps you sort it out.
First, I am not an “expert” on this subject, but I do have a lot of experience with live classes which I started doing in 2011.
After a change of location, I had to get online to reach my customers, keep connected with my direct sales’ team, and stay on or slightly ahead of trend. Plus, lest you think I am super forward thinking tech-geek, my 80+ year old Mama wanted to Skype, so she bought me my first webcam.
I had a sweet co-consultant to bounce ideas off of, and she held my hand as I started.
Speed up to 2020, when we are all sheltering-in-place, everyone seems to be doing lives on FB, and many are feeling a pressure to go online. Are you feeling the pressure?
WEEK ONE – Comfort Zone
“LIVES ARE OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE”
Getting out of one’s comfort zone seems to be the number one fear about doing business-related lives. And, it makes sense. Lives are essentially public speaking to an unseen audience, and public speaking is ranked as a top 5 human fear.
Which are you?
A. Yes, I’m cool with getting out of my comfort zone with business lives.
B. No, I’m really not ok with getting out of my comfort zone with business lives.
Keep reading, this might help both A and B types.
You may be feeling a push or a nudge to do some business lives on social media. Try asking yourself what is your business goal and is it important enough to get out of your comfort zone and go live on social media (usually FB Lives)? Why do you want to do this, is it…
a. to connect with and as friends?
b. to sell and drive sales?
c. to teach & reach your customers and potential customers about your products and services?
What is your reason and how much time are you willing to spend learning and organizing for your reason?
a. Is your reason to connect as friends?
Chances are your friends want to get together with you, too.
Learn to host on Zoom, Duo, Skype, or some other site that allows a group to be together, see faces, and talk. You can host crop time, card time, swaps, or just have dinner together. You do not have to be a consultant/demonstrator for a company to get some crafty friends together!
Is connecting with friends your reason? How much time are you willing to spend learning and organizing connecting with friends?
b. Is your reason to sell and drive sales?
There are lots of gurus who will be happy to sell you their know-how on this subject.
I am not one of them.
If you are working with a company, they will most likely have copy and videos you can share online. Generally, shares from corporate sites did not generate much algorithm interest on my FB compared to my own lives and posts.
Here are a couple of things to consider.
Where do you want to do your lives?
– YouTube (private or public),
– Facebook (your group, someone else’s group, your page?
– Instagram (you’ll have to tell me, I haven’t done this)?
What is it you will want to sell? Products? Services? How often? How will you set yourself apart? How will you convert views to sales?
What numbers are you wanting as results? What dollar amount will make it worth your while to leave your comfort zone and market?
I never made much money in direct sales.
Lives helped drive sales a little, but the bucks weren’t proportionate to the hours I spent prepping and doing them. So, if lives didn’t significantly increase my sales or recruiting, I had to ask myself why.
Who were my viewers? Turns out the majority of them were other consultants. No wonder the lives didn’t help my sales! :o)
We all love tidbits and nuggets, though, and it is great to be sought out for ideas (thus, FUNN University was born)! But, to watch my lives for a business model? Let me set the record straight – lives did not bring in big bucks, but they were FUNN. Maybe someone else’s experience is different.
It doesn’t bother me, because it made me realize I was really tired of chasing sales; I wanted to teach, which is what I love. So, I “fired” my very faithful scrapbook club of 15 years (sorry!!!!), and quit being a consultant to double down on FUNN University. On campus, I can truly teach paper crafting and help others enjoy their craft until my heart is content. This also allowed me to post really honest blogs like this about my experiences and stories which someone may find helpful.
Now, I create to teach, not sell. I love it.
The good news is, through going online, I have met some really fabulous people, we have a good time together, and that makes the world a happier place.
Weirdo that I am, I love doing lives! Lives and snuggling my kitty are my comfort zones! My new paper crafting game show “Craft Roulette” on mary gunn FUNN’s FB page, Friday evenings at 6:30 p.m. Central is a hoot! It is a complete immersion into creativity and I don’t have to sell a thing.
Join us! It has helped make crafting FUNN again.
Are sales enough reason to leave your comfort zone? How much time are you willing to spend learning and organizing lives for sales?
C. Is your reason to teach your customers and reach potential customers?
It is my reason!
I will watch your lives if you are teaching, sharing your ideas, and inspiration with unique approaches! I have a problem watching lives that are are creating corporate projects with the goal of selling. It’s probably just me, but I am 100 times more likely to watch someone I can learn from, than from someone trying to sell me something, aren’t you?
So, what would you teach? Who would your audience be? What will set you apart from all the noise? How many viewers would it take to “make it worth your while”?
Is reaching and teaching your reason? How much time are you willing to spend learning and organizing reaching and teaching?
Synopsis and Homework
Lives take time, effort, and time. It can take weeks, months, and maybe years of consistent lives before you get much feedback and interest, if at all. Did I mention it takes time and effort? Well, it takes a lot of time and effort.
Don’t feel pressure to do lives because it seems “everyone else” is doing them. Isn’t that like a 7th grade reason? “Oh, but, mom, everyone is doing lives!“ Tell your 7th grade self to do the research first and think about it.
Do them because you’ve done your homework, you’ve answered the questions, and understand your reasons. Do them because you want to do them. Do them because your desire and belief in what you offer is stronger than the walls of your comfort zone.
After you decide your desire to do lives is bigger than your comfort zone, then here are six things you can do this week.
- Watch 10 live presenters (including me*) and take notes about what they do that you like.
- Set up a private FB group for practicing. Call it, “My Test”. If you have a friend or family member that will help you, include them!
- Start testing by making videos in your private My Test FB group.
- Review and critique your video. If you’re scared of criticism – take an 80/20 approach. Find eight things you did well, two things you could improve, and adjust. I still do this with every recorded video.
- Schedule your week’s practice times.
- Continue your process. Practice, review, and adjust. Review, your goals, also. If you want to teach techniques, practice showing ONE technique every day for a week, or whatever you’ve decided your schedule and goals to be. Focus on improvement.
Truth is, lives and videos may look easy, they are not. There are lots of moving parts, technical challenges, and it takes work and practice.
I’ve have a note on my fridge that says, “Life wouldn’t seem so hard if we didn’t expect it to be so easy.” Lives are a wonderful example of this saying.
But, try it if you feel a nudge or push. You now have some feeling for what to do next.
If you’ve gotten this far and you don’t think lives are for you…Relax
If you no longer feel a nudge or push, learn to relax and quit feeling the pressure and guilt to do lives when you don’t want to. Instead, spend that time reaching out to your customers personally, ask for sales and referrals. Ask if they have interest in a Zoom craft night or something similar.
You might be more inspired later to try lives. Put it on the back burner or kick the notion to the curb. It’s your business.
Leave a comment on what you think, encourage friends or team members to join us, and have some FUNN. Thanks for listening to these ideas. I hope they’ve helped.
Week two … WHAT SHOULD I DO ABOUT CONTENT?
Come back next Wednesday for Week two’s blog about social media lives.
Kiss your brain and all the best,